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Fulham 0-1 Stoke LgC Rnd 03 1516 - Daily Mirror

last updated Wednesday 23rd September 2015, 1:54 PM

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Fulham (0) 0-1 (1) Stoke

The struggling Potters sneaked into the fourth round of the Capital One Cup after the veteran striker fired home before the break

Peter Crouch opened his account for the season to send struggling Stoke into the fourth round of the Capital One Cup.

The veteran striker fired home before the break to give Mark Hughes a first win at Craven Cottage since walking out on Fulham four years ago.

However, Stoke didn't have it all their way against their Championship opponents.

Alex Kacaniklic went close to giving the home side an early lead when his cross-cum-shot was turned away by Shay Given.

Peter Odemwingie fired just wide at the other end after Fulham defender Dan Burn was caught in possession.

The Nigerian forward was part of the Stoke side that consigned the Cottagers to relegation from the Premier League with a 4-1 victory at the Britannia Stadium in May 2014.

And he piled more misery on the Championship side with the assist for the visitors' winner just after the half-hour mark.

Crouch exchanged passes with Odemwingie before brushing off Richard Stearman and firing past Joe Lewis from inside the box.

Fulham's Ross McCormack and substitute Moussa Dembele both wasted great chances to level in the second half.

Lasse Vigen Christensen almost caught Given out from long range, while the keeper denied the Dane at the death.

Burn rattled the woodwork in stoppage time but Stoke held on to seal their spot in the last 16.

Hughes assured Crouch, who was making just his third appearance of the season, he still has a big part to play for the Potters.

"Pete struggled in pre-season. He had an operation that didn't go as planned and that set him back. Only now he's getting up to speed," explained the Welshman.

"It was important he got game time and he did really well. It was a good finish and he will start to progress his season from here. He's proved tonight that if you get him in good positions he's an accomplished player and understands what it takes at this level.

"He's got a big role to play."

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